“Editors’ Choice: Red berry, rose and camphor aromas waft out of the glass. Tangy and delicious, the smooth, full-bodied palate doles out ripe Marasca cherry, fleshy raspberry and hints of ground baking spice framed in taut, polished tannins. It's already accessible but also has good midterm aging potential. Drink 2022–2029. 93 points.” –Kerin O’Keefe, Wine Enthusiast, July 1, 2021 Edition.
The true Beauty of Albe is the caress of the sun that rises three times every morning over our vineyards. It’s the exceptional simplicity of nature that makes the awakening of life an everyday miracle. -Milena Vaira
DESCRIPTION: Our tribute to the Masters of tradition, Albe is the blend of highelevation Barolo vineyards. As these blocks lay on various slopes with different exposures, we have the chance to see three sunrises (Albe) every day. 2017 is a radiant vintage with beautiful early balance and yet great potential of improvement over time.
VARIETAL: 100% Nebbiolo.
VINEYARD AND TERROIR: Albe is a blend of wonderful Barolo DOCG vineyards with exposures that range from south-south-east to south-west, at high elevation between 380 and 480 m above sea level.
GROWING: In 1971, Aldo Vajra, then still a university student, was one of the earliest to adopt organic farming in Piemonte. Vineyards have been nurtured, and soil preserved, by grassing and spontaneous cover crop for almost 50 years now. They are sustainable and organic certified. With an incredible ratio of manual work per hectare, farming at Vajra is a labor of love and “recipe-free” attention. Intense research is also placed into monitoring and improving the biodiversity of both flora and fauna not just in the vineyards, but also in the winery fields and forests.
VINTAGE: The 2017 Barolos are profound and characterized by a core of red fruits, acid spine and refined tannins that set the wines for the long haul. In Europe, this was recorded as the lowest yielding vintage since 1947, due to a combination of spring frost and summer droughts. The outcome is surprising, due to the combination of limited intake of potassium in the fruit and cool nights throughout the season, with an almost perfect September. After a mild winter with little snow and an anticipated vegetative development, temperatures brutally dropped between April 19th and 21st, with frost across Europe that luckily spared our vineyards. Starting in May, the weather turned stable. Days were hot but the nights cooler than in 2003 and 2011. The strong diurnal drop of temperature preserved the vines from water stress, despite little or no rainfalls. By early September, night temperatures dropped even further, enhancing phenolic ripening while slowing down sugar accumulation. Average time between bud break and ripening was 185 days. According to the Consorzio Langhe, ‘hot’ vintages last 170 days and ‘late’ vintages 200 days.
HARVEST AND WINEMAKING: Fruit for 2017 Barolo DOCG Albe was picked between September 26th and October 3rd. Vinification was carried in custom designed vertical tini, with gentle punch down and cap pump-overs, and lasted between 28 and 49 days on average, with partial submerged-cap maceration. Spontaneous malolactic fermentation was held in stainless steel during the following spring.
AGING: The 2017 Barolo DOCG Albe aged for 18 months in large Slavonian oak casks of 40, 50 and 75 hL. The wines were racked once, in the summer of 2018, and blended right before the bottling.
TASTING NOTES: 2017 Barolo Albe opens up with a bright, expressive nose. Red currant, cherries, macerated strawberries and mint are interlaced with floral tones and hints of rosehip, rhubarb, red fig, hawthorn, lavender and licorice. The palate is generous, layered and youthful, with ripe tannins and a classic finish on tones of marasca cherry.